Where Do We Draw The Line Between Pragmatism And Paranoia?

obsigna

Aspiring Daemon

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Why do you ask him ?
He doesn't use FreeBSD on that server , it`s Tux . 😁
That is fake news, hoax or however we call it. Present your alternative facts! :D

I just executed on my home server which is also the web server of my BLog: # uname -mnv
server.obsigna.com FreeBSD 12.0-RELEASE-p7 GENERIC amd64
 

toorski

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Some of you might not know this, but I have a deep interest in how various Technologies work. Which means that I might try to implement things that some might deem unnecessary. And, though you may not know it, I actually have Autism,
You are not the only one in the game of implementing things deemed unnecessary.
MS, Google, Apple, Facebook, Oracle, FOSS community of devs, programmers, coders and power users implement things that some deem unnecessary, yet some others can't live without :)

"People with autism may be severely impaired in some respects but normal, or even superior, in other."
If that's the case, according to Wikipedia's AI, then all of us have some form of Autism;)
 

rufwoof

Active Member

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Dunno where I should draw the line, as when I asked Google Home it said "sorry I can't help with that yet". So clearly Google is still yet making up my mind.
 

ralphbsz

Daemon

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You should ask Siri. The people who implement it have a great sense of humor. For example, ask them what the meaning of life is, or the airspeed of an unladen swallow.
 

Crivens

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ucomp Well, you may lie some if you want. As long as you hide what is good to hide, all is fine.
 

Crivens

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indeed, it would greatly help the world if some thoughts were kept hidden and would never got access to everyday practice....
Why do I think of MBAs and lawyers now?
 

OJ

Daemon

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My difficulty with losing privacy really isn't about the fact that my life is being tracked and used to sell me items. I'm one of those people (about 30% of humanity) that truly isn't positively influenced by advertising.
The problem lies with the fact that people don't really understand that there is no such thing as just data. The value in big data doesn't lie in the data itself, it lies in the information that can be inferred from said data.
That's where things become more abstract, but also way more dangerous.
I couldn't agree more. And to me the "abstraction" here is the most dangerous part because it depends on the things outside of one's personal control, and indeed outside of one's personal reality. When these abstractions become the basis for assumptions that can put you in jail or cause other political problems, then they become very real.

We're fairly lucky in most Western countries in that our governments are fairly reasonable, but it hasn't always been so, and (based on history) it will not always remain so. Hints of being a communist (the meaning is not relevant) could easily cause great trouble in both Canada and USA just a few years ago. Large databases from which to make inferences that may not even be true, are a dangerous thing.

Amazon suggesting a list of things that are possibly of interest to me is one thing. That is personally fairly harmless, if sometimes irritating, although that approach really does distort the whole market in ways that are not always good. It is quite another thing if a prosecutor of some kind is out to get me (or people in general) for idealist reasons.
 

CraigHB

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Where ~do~ you draw the line. I try to limit my exposure, but it can easily get to a point where I'm worrying about nothing. On the other hand it's probably a good idea not to underestimate the ability of the system (as in corporations and government) to collect and use personal information against you.

People are definitely foolish about broadcasting personal information. Such as the Easter break photos that an employer might come across in looking at a prospective employee. I know that does happen where employers do background checks and come across unflattering information like that.

At one point I did almost get caught up in the social media thing due to the influence of a family member, but then I came to my senses and closed down my accounts. I think I kind of hurt my relative's feelings doing that, but sorry I just don't want to put myself on the internet in that way. At least on forums there's some semblance of anonymity.
 

AlexanderProphet

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When the Chinese Communist Party is literally arresting people, cutting out their vital organs for transplant (sometimes whilst they're still conscious) and killing them... it seems self indulgent for me to complain because a website is trying to get me to buy a beard trimmer or a device to cook bacon more efficiently.
We just have to hope that no other parts of the world become Chinese colonies any time soon.
 

ucomp

Active Member

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No idea. But I can only recommend to read Gibson.
yes, thanks for the recommendation ... I've just read from that brother of K. Thompson , who recommends the basic tools Needed to Maintain privacy ...like , motor-oil, wire-brushes & Anti-lice -shampoo
 

drhowarddrfine

Son of Beastie

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an employer might come across in looking at a prospective employee.
When I owned my restaurants, we did that all the time. You might not be surprised at the OMG! things we saw. Some of the photos could be hideous.
It wasn't the occasional weird pic or comment that bothered me. It was the common theme of things, most often the language or talk of what they were going to do to someone Saturday night or drug usage.

One guy worked for another Subway. He had a video of himself smoking weed in back while on break with other employees and a friend who stopped by. Not interested.
 
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PMc

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The trouble began much earlier. The basic truth is: we can be manipulated. (That thing with the "unconscious".) We are doing and thinking a lot of things, and we do not really know why - or we think we know why but what we think is wrong. Just look at morals and/or sexuality, and you will find lots of such matters.
There were always people who knew this, and there were always so-called schools to train and learn to know oneself. (One of the newer ones is psychoanalysis, an older one is buddhism.) But very few people pursued that issue, very few people actually bothered themself to the pursuit of "temet nosce", know thyself.

Then there was the Era of the "Aufklärung", when we declared "reason" as the proper way to view the world and started to do deliberate nature science, and did away with magical thinking, did away with unproved beliefs. And especially many computer people are strongly rooted in that kind of world-view.
The problem with this is that the whole unconscious still exists and does shape our thinking, much more than we would admit and a lot more than reason could ever do. Everybody doing some stock jobbing knows this: one tries to adhere to ratio, but actually one is much more driven by fear and greed.
So the whole idea of "reason" is in itself just an unproven belief, and in fact it does not work.
Whereas the old magical viewpoint, the religious and ritual stuff, had a strong relation to the way our unconsicous works, and could -if done properly- at least deliver some human values and ethics.

But with reason there are no real ethics at all. So if Google says, we collect data because we want to help the people choose the products they actually like, then that is a reasonable viewpoint.
You would need a somehow ethical viewpoint in order to argue why it is not good to reduce people to mere functions of consumption, where part of that function can easily be taken away and moved into the cloud.

I am not troubled about privacy. But today I got a questionnaire from PayPal, and they asked on which online shops I did buy things. Very well. But then they mentioned a couple of other online shops and asked why I didn't by at these also, and how they should improve the "shopping experience" in order to make me buy there.
And this is what troubles me: they seem to think that "shopping" is a pursuit, an engagement, an amusement, an end in itself! Hell no! I buy things when I need them, and I buy the things I need: the act of buying is a means to some other end.
So, if the commonsense now is that the means of existence is shopping, then something is very very wrong, and privacy is one of the least worrysome aspects of it.
 

drhowarddrfine

Son of Beastie

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I buy things when I need them
I try to follow this phrase when someone approaches me to try and sell me something. "If I wanted it, I would be searching for it." But often you may not be aware such a product exists. So I might listen to see what he's pushing but he has to grab my interest in the first few seconds. Otherwise I have no problem just saying I'm not interested, turn and walk away in mid-sentence.
 

Trihexagonal

Daemon

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The trouble began much earlier. The basic truth is: we can be manipulated. (That thing with the "unconscious".) We are doing and thinking a lot of things, and we do not really know why - or we think we know why but what we think is wrong. Just look at morals and/or sexuality, and you will find lots of such matters.
There were always people who knew this, and there were always so-called schools to train and learn to know oneself. (One of the newer ones is psychoanalysis, an older one is buddhism.)
They teach classes in manipulation and mind control, too.

I am not troubled about privacy. But today I got a questionnaire from PayPal, and they asked on which online shops I did buy things. Very well. But then they mentioned a couple of other online shops and asked why I didn't by at these also, and how they should improve the "shopping experience" in order to make me buy there.
And this is what troubles me: they seem to think that "shopping" is a pursuit, an engagement, an amusement, an end in itself! Hell no! I buy things when I need them, and I buy the things I need: the act of buying is a means to some other end.
I was against any form of online commerce for a long time till I discovered the Joy of ebay and the multitude of things they had for sale you just didn't normally see. I signed up for an ebay and a Paypal account, this before they merged, but any purchases I made were by check that I mailed in to them. That took 2 weeks to clear, put a cramp in my style and not every dealer wants to hold something 2 weeks for a check to clear. I linked my bank account and now purchases go through instantly from my ebay page using my Paypal account. I've done business with people all over the world and it's been a positive experience for me.

If I use a different computer to log on to ebay they'll flag it as not recognized, want to call my number to confirm it's really me and I've never had any problems with unauthorized purchases. I have all my purchase receipts sent to my offshore email account in Israel so the Mossad can keep my file updated. It's of little concern if they see what I buy and I've never gotten a survey like you mentioned. If I get any onsite emails from ebay that aren't strictly business I delete it without looking at it.

I'm still against online banking and don't do business on Amazon, they make you jump through too many hoops. If on occasion there's something on Amazon I want my sisters hubby buys it and reimburse him.
 

PMc

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They teach classes in manipulation and mind control, too.
Yes, and some of these can be partially useful, although they are intended for other purposes. Donald Kingsbury, for instance, seems to have grabbed some wisdom from Scientology Church, and if you manage to get a copy of his novel Courtship Rite, you find a bunch of brave ideas that nicely and validly break some borders of commonsense thinking.

The mind has by nature been designed to be 100% self-referential - there is no common baseline anywhere, all of them are fabrications, and while this is probably the only possible sustainable design, it tends to frighten people a lot when they find out.
Obviousely, anything that deals with the matter has a high abuse potential.
 
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